A Legend…Coming to Colgate

John Kelly

As the temperatures drop and the snow piles up outside my window, I am often left to wonder why I chose to attend a small liberal arts college in the middle of freezing New York. Then I receive an e-mail announcing Wesley Clark’s appearance on Tuesday, February 20 at 8 p.m. and my faith in Colgate is restored. On this night, I will have the opportunity to not only listen to, but also meet one of the great heroes of our generation in the Ho Lecture Room.

Clark served as the former NATO Supreme Allied Commander of Europe from 1997-2000. During this time he led Operation Allied Force, which was responsible for saving nearly 1.5 million Albanians from ethnic cleansing in Kosovo. In recognition of his efforts, General Clark received the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the Silver Star and the Purple Heart.

It is this unique opportunity to meet and mingle with world renowned leaders, artists, and athletes in such an intimate setting that makes Colgate such a wonderful place. Never again in our lives will we have the opportunity to attend prestigious lectures that are less than five minutes from our dorm absolutely free. We each pay 40,000 dollars a year to attend Colgate, and although the education we receive in the classrooms is first-rate, many of us miss out on the countless opportunities to expand our horizons outside of the classroom.

I witnessed this inexcusable apathy last year when I had the honor of attending an excellent speech by world-renowned basketball player and author, Kareem Abdul Jabaar. As I walked into the chapel I was dismayed to find more than half the seats empty. Speakers of such high esteem attend institutions of higher learning to spread their wisdom.

I urge each and everyone of you guys to get off your computers and out of your beds to attend Wesley Clark’s lecture entitled “National Security and the Political Process in Post-September 11 America” on Tuesday, February 20 at 8 p.m. in the chapel. It is often the lessons we learn outside of the classroom that leave an indelible mark on our lives.